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Bordeaux is a city revitalized; once nicknamed ‘The Sleeping Beauty’, it is now very much awake. Its gorgeous old town is lined with iconic spires and grandiose palaces, while its once-gritty docklands have been regenerated to become trendy dining and sightseeing destinations. Rent a car through Orbitz to discover one of France’s most exciting cities.

Renting a car in Bordeaux: What you need to know

Orbitz can make your trip to Bordeaux a whole lot easier. We’ve compiled answers to some of the big car rental questions below to help you plan your journey.

Which car rental companies operate in Bordeaux?

Bordeaux is a busy, modern city with a number of car rental companies available to meet the demand of the vacation and business travelers that come here. Use Orbitz to choose between companies such as Europcar, Alamo, Enterprise, Sixt, Hertz, Thrifty and more.

Where can I pick up my rental car in Bordeaux?

Bordeaux Airport hosts many of the city’s car rental agencies, although that is located about 30 minutes outside of the city center. Head into central Bordeaux to find more car rental companies, particularly near the main train station.

What is the minimum age for renting a car in Bordeaux?

Most car rental companies will enforce a minimum age of 21 for anyone looking to rent a car, adding on a surcharge for drivers younger than 25.

What do I need to bring with me to pick up a rental car?

A valid US driver’s license and a credit card are required for renting a car in Bordeaux. If you’re visiting for fewer than 90 days, bring an International Driving Permit or a notarized translation of your driving license into French.

Should I book my rental car in advance?

Bordeaux can get busy in peak season, so it’s worth grabbing a good car rental deal in advance. There’s no disadvantage, either, as deposits and cancellation fees are rare.

Explore Bordeaux: Grandeur on the Garonne

Use your rental car to drive between the different, dazzling neighborhoods of Bordeaux, and to travel further afield. We’ve highlighted three destinations to visit in and around the city.

Downtown Bordeaux

The historic center of Bordeaux is the main destination for sightseeing. Here’s where you’ll find the glimmering Mirroir de l’Eau, a shallow water feature that reflects the glorious palaces and governmental buildings of Place de la Bourse. Downtown also hosts the local opera house and cultural center, as well as museums of modern art and local history.

Bassins à Flots

Experience the regeneration of Bordeaux in the lively docklands neighborhood of Bassins à Flots. The main draw here is the architectural marvel that is La Cité du Vin, a vast museum dedicated to wine – said to be the largest of its kind in the world. A submarine base in Bassins today doubles as a cultural space and concert venue, while the Chaban-Delmas Bridge is its own attraction, lifting like an elevator as boats drift along the river.

Landes de Gascogne

Drive just a short distance out of the city center to reach the Landes de Gascogne Regional Nature Park, a destination for eco-tourism, adventure sports and coastal hikes. While you’re paddling, biking or trekking through the landscape, don’t miss the Marquèze Eco-Museum to learn about Gascon traditions, and feast on some of the local snacks.